Trigger finger disorder, also known as stenosing tenosynovitis, is a condition that affects the hand and wrist. The condition is caused by inflammation of the flexor tendon sheath. This sheath surrounds the flexor tendons which run from the forearm to the fingers. When this sheath becomes inflamed, it can cause pain and stiffness in the hand and wrist, making it difficult to move your fingers. In this article, we shall look at the causes and symptoms of trigger finger disorder, as well as how it is diagnosed and treated.
What is Trigger Finger Disorder and how can it be treated?
It is a common condition where one of your fingers gets stuck in a bent position and then suddenly releases itself with a “trigger-like” snap. The finger may catch or lock from time to time, especially when you are extending it.
In some cases, the condition can be serious and lead to a swollen tendon sheath called tenosynovitis. This typically happens in the thumb and can make it painful to straighten your fingers. Trigger finger is different from trigger thumb, which is a condition that only affects the thumb.
Trigger finger disorder usually affects the thumb, index, middle, or ring fingers. Symptoms tend to be mild at first but can become worse if left untreated. If you experience pain in any of your fingers when trying to make a fist or grip something, this is usually a sign that you may have trigger finger disorder. You might also notice that it become shard to straighten the affected fingers. Another sign is that you feel a click or popping sensation when opening or closing your hand. This clicking sound is made by the tendons slipping back into place as they move through the inflamed tendon sheath.
Causes and Risk Factors
One of the most common causes of trigger finger disorder is when the tendons in your fingers don’t slide easily within their sheath. The cause of this is not entirely known but it may be due to injury, overuse, or rheumatoid arthritis.
You are also at a higher risk for trigger finger disorder if you regularly participate in activities that put a strain on your hand and wrist such as playing a musical instrument or typing. Women over the age of 50 are also more prone to trigger finger disorder than men, probably due to hormonal changes that weaken the tissues in your fingers.
Diagnosis and Treatment
A doctor may perform a physical examination to diagnose. During the examination, the doctor will check for swelling, tenderness, and muscle weakness in the affected hand or wrist. In addition, they will look at how well you can move your fingers and thumb. If your doctor suspects that your symptoms are caused by trigger finger, they may order an X-ray, ultrasound, or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan to confirm the diagnosis.
If you have trigger finger disorder, don’t panic. There are several treatments available that can ease pain and stiffness in the hand or wrist. For most patients, trigger finger treatment consists of avoiding any activities that make symptoms worse and resting the affected hand. In some cases, a splint may be used which keeps your fingers extended. Over-the-counter medications that help control pain and inflammation may also be recommended.
If these treatments are not effective, your doctor may inject corticosteroids into the affected tendon sheath to reduce inflammation. Surgery is another option for treating trigger finger disorder. A small cut (incision) is made in the palm of your hand or on the back of your wrist. This allows the surgeon to examine the affected tendon sheath and tendons. If they are inflamed, they can be released from surrounding tissue so that they have more space to move.
How can Trigger Finger Disorder be prevented?
There are several steps you can take to prevent trigger finger disorder from developing. One of the most important is to avoid any activity that puts strain on your hand and wrist. You can do this by taking regular breaks when typing or playing a musical instrument, and by using the appropriate ergonomic equipment.
You can also strengthen the muscles in your hand and wrist by doing regular exercises. This will help keep the tendons in your fingers flexible and less likely to catch or lock. Finally, try to maintain a healthy weight as being overweight can put added stress on your hands and wrists.
Trigger finger disorder is a common issue for many people. It affects your fingers and can make it painful to grip things, straighten your fingers or cause clicking sounds when you move them. The pain from trigger finger may be mild at first but if left untreated could become worse. There are treatments available that will help with the symptoms of this condition such as resting the affected hand and using over-the-counter medications to control inflammation and pain. If these don’t work, surgery might be necessary to release any tendons in order to relieve pressure on them caused by injury or arthritis. In addition, there are steps you can take before developing trigger finger disorder which includes avoiding activities that put a strain on your hands and wrists so they won’t get inflamed or injured and strengthening the muscles in your hands and wrists to keep the tendons flexible.
Shirley Mist has been involved in fashion and design for many years. She has also written extensively for many online publications. She currently writes for The Tribune World and is a valued member of our team.